Happiness is not a pre-packaged product that can be purchased off the shelf. It is not a condition and/or situation which is fixed and determined by unitary social constructs. It is NOT an imperative and it is even less so when it forces us to abide by a hypocritical configuration of happiness that subordinates rather than liberates.
The persistent throbbing imperative to 'BE HAPPY' has converted almost every aspect of communal humanity into an exchange value. The question is: whose happiness are we adopting and what sort of happiness are we perpetuating? To what extent are we willing to subsist in pursuing happiness when the failure to do so can be equally gratifying?
Happiness is the freedom to experience differently in each time and place without shame. But, how powerful, vigorous and free are alternative cultural forms of production? How do they contest dominant forms, or what contradictions do they mediate, resolve or fail. This exhibition engages with the processes and practices that presumably make us happy instead of assuming that ‘being happy’ is a pre-given universal goal.
Our approach will stress feminist, queer and anti-capitalist methodologies as alternatives to the mainstream imperatives of success, work, consumption and belonging. The artists will reflect on the notion of happiness in order to elaborate new values, failures and escapades.
Artists: Laura Cooper, Oliver Cronk, Petra Kubisova, Anna Lopez, Amanda Millis and Linda Stupart
Curated and organised by: Giulia Casalini & Diana Georgiou
Organisational assistant: Laura Di Nicolantonio